Irrigation pump issue at BBP… Region Six Chairman blasts Opposition misconceptions, lies
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Region 6 Chairman, David Armogan
Region 6 Chairman, David Armogan

REGION Six Chairman, Mr. David Armogan has blasted the misconceptions and lies being peddled by some sections of the Opposition media and allied forces with respect to the water situation at Black Bush Polder, Corentyne.

“There is no crisis, it’s just a question of waiting!” he told members of the Berbice media during a mid-morning press briefing on Tuesday at the Regional Complex in Vryman’s Erven, New Amsterdam Berbice.

Armogan said it was brought to his attention that an AFC activist had, via his Facebook page, stated that there was a water situation in the Black Bush community, that it had become unbearable for farmers, and that the farmers were beginning to react.

“I want to say categorically that that is not so! We have five pumps operating at Black Bush Polder. Prior to that, we had three pumps operating to provide irrigation water. We have 17,000/18,000 acres under rice cultivation and 6,000 under cash crop farming. In the front lands we have 20,000 rice lands under cultivation,” Armogan disclosed.

Chairman Armogan further said the pumps commenced operation on October 15, but where these pumps are located at the back lands farmers have large pumps, and once the water goes into the irrigation system, the water would then be channelled into the rice fields.

“So the front areas will not get water until the back areas would have taken their quota of water. The problem exists with the front lands areas. Now that the backlands have been satisfied, the water will move to the front land areas,” he assured.

“All the farmers cannot get all the water supply at the same time. It has to take time to reach all sections of the polder. About 90 (to) 98% of farmers have been supplied with irrigation water for this crop”, he declared.

“Nevertheless, to circumvent the problem, we have sectionalised the water; so, within three to four weeks, the entire Black Bush Polder will get water. This has been a normal situation, and has never been an issue,” Armogan contended.

However, addressing another issue with respect to an abandoned Blackstone pump, he said there is a Blackstone engine that has been bought since in the early sixties, when the scheme was opened. ‘That engine should have been rehabilitated, but the company that made the components for the engine is now out of existence.

In his Alliance For Change posting on Facebook on December 8, recently elected executive member Mark Ross wrote: “Two weeks after my first visit to Black Bush, and after the installation of additional pumps to supply water to farmlands, five pumps cannot still do the job of the abandon “Blackstone” pump, which was purchased decades ago. One engineer said the Blackstone pump could be repaired, but the PPP isn’t interested in fixing it, because to repair 5 pumps on a monthly basis provides their cronies with an income at the expense of tax payers while farmers suffer. A source told us, on a visit to the pump station located at Mibicuri, that the Blackstone pump could do 10 times the job the current 5 pumps are doing, and will solve the water problem.”

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